Fintan Madden
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Fintan Madden
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Essex County Housing Report January 14, 2022

Essex County Housing Report January 14, 2022

Inflation continues to slow, but remains well above the Federal Reserve’s target of 2%. Federal Reserve will continue its anti-inflationary policies. December CPI (Consumer Price Index) fell to 6.5% from 7.1% in November. Core Inflation, all items index less food and energy, was 5.7%

Mortgage Rates are trending down; Conforming 30 Year Fixed now 6.09%.

Bottom Line:

Housing, Single Families and Condos, sales activity continues to slow as the Fed fights inflation. December Year over Year: Sold Price increases slowed, +2.8%, Units Sales fell -32.5%, Active Listings fell -6.5%.

Month Over Month, December 2022 vs November 2022

  • Median Sold Prices:

    Single Families -10%; Condos -.01%; Multi-Families -3%

  • Unit Sales: 

    Single Families -8.4%, Condos -24.2%, Multi-Families -5.7%

  • Active Listings:

    Single Families -30.1%, Condos -19.9%, Multi-Families -27.9%

  • Current Months of Inventory: 

    Single Families 1.3, Condos 1.6, Multi-Families 2

    Year Over Year, December 2022 vs December 2021

Housing Market Forecast 2023

What To Expect From the Housing Market in 2023


The 2022 housing market has been defined by two key things: inflation and rapidly rising mortgage rates. And in many ways, it's put the market into a reset position.

As the Federal Reserve (the Fed) made moves this year to try to lower inflation, mortgage rates more than doubled – something that’s never happened before in a calendar year. This had a cascading impact on buyer activity, the balance between supply and demand, and ultimately home prices. And as all those things changed, some buyers and sellers put their plans on hold and decided to wait until the market felt a bit more predictable.

But what does that mean for next year? What everyone really wants is more stability in the market in 2023. For that to happen we’ll need to see the Fed bring inflation down even more and keep it there. Here’s what housing market experts say we can expect next year.

What’s Ahead for Mortgage Rates in 2023?

Moving forward, experts agree it’s still going to be all about inflation. If inflation is high, mortgage rates will be as well. But if inflation continues to fall, mortgage rates will likely respond. While there may be early signs inflation is easing as we round out this year, we’re not out of the woods just yet. Inflation is still something to watch in 2023.

Right now, experts are factoring all of this into their mortgage rate forecasts for next year. And if we average those forecasts together, experts say we can expect rates to stabilize a bit more in 2023. Whether that’s between 5.5% and 6.5%, it’s hard for experts to say exactly where they’ll land. But based on the average of their projections, a more predictable rate is likely ahead (see chart below):

What To Expect from the Housing Market in 2023 | MyKCM

That means, we’ll start the year out about where we are right now. But we could see rates tick down if inflation continues to drop. As Greg McBride, Chief Financial Analyst at Bankrateexplains:

“. . . mortgage rates could pull back meaningfully next year if inflation pressures ease.

In the meantime, expect some volatility as rates will likely fluctuate in the weeks ahead. If we see inflation come back under control, that would be good news for the housing market.

What Will Happen to Home Prices Next Year?

Homes prices will always be defined by supply and demand. The more buyers and fewer homes there are on the market, the more home prices will rise. And that’s exactly what we saw during the pandemic.

But this year, things changed. We’ve seen home prices moderate and housing supply grow as buyer demand pulled back due to higher mortgage rates. The level of moderation has varied by local area – with the biggest changes happening in overheated markets. But do experts think that will continue?

The graph below shows the latest home price forecasts for 2023. As the different colored bars indicate, some experts are saying home prices will appreciate next year, and others are saying home prices will come down. But again, if we take the average of all the forecasts (shown in green), we can get a feel for what 2023 may hold.

What To Expect from the Housing Market in 2023 | MyKCM

The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. That means nationally, we’ll likely see relatively flat or neutral appreciation in 2023. As Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), says:

After a big boom over the past two years, there will essentially be no change nationally . . . Half of the country may experience small price gains, while the other half may see slight price declines.”

Bottom Line

The 2023 housing market is going to be defined by mortgage rates, and rates will be determined by what happens with inflation. The best way to keep a pulse on what experts are projecting for next year is to lean on a trusted real estate advisor. Let’s connect.

Essex County Housing Report December 14, 2022

Essex County December Housing Report 12/14/2022

Inflation is slowing, but is way above the Federal Reserve’s target of 2%.  
November CPI (Consumer Price Index) fell to 7.1% from 7.7% in October.
November PPI (Producer Price Index) fell to 7.4% from 8.1% in October. PPI measures wholesale Prices
To fight inflation, the Federal Reserve continues to raise interest rates and sell off their Balance Sheet Assets to tighten credit (Quantitive Tightening).  
Federal Funds Rate increased +0.5% to 4.25% - 4.5% 
Mortgage Rates are trending down; Conforming 30 Year Fixed now 6.33%.

Bottom Line:
Housing Listing and Sales activity continues to moderate as the Fed fights inflation.
Year over Year price increases are slowing, +6.3%, Units Sales fell -26%, Active Listings fell -16%.  Months of Inventory rose +21% as Unit Sales fell more the Active Listings.  

Month Over Month, November 2022 vs October 2022

  • Median Sold Prices:
    Single Families +4.4%;  Condos -1.1%;  Multi-Families  -1.5%
  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families -4.2%, Condos +29.3%, Multi-Families +1.9%
  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -14.2%, Condos -6.3%, Multi-Families -10.6% 
  • Current Months of Inventory:
    Single Families 1.6, Condos 1.4, Multi-Families 2.4

Year Over Year, November 2022 vs November 2021

  • Median Sold Prices: 
    Single Families +6.6%; Condos +6.0%;  Multi-Families +2.2% 
  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families -23.1% , Condos -34.0%, Multi-Families -44.8%.
  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -4.3%; Condos -23.9%; Multi-Families -16.0% 
  • Change in Months of Inventory:
    Single Families +23.1%, Condos  16.7%, Multi-Families +50.0%.

    Terry Sullivan

Essex County Housing Report November 18, 2022

Essex County November Housing Report 11/18/2022

Inflation shows signs of slowing, but is excessively high. October Consumer Price Index was 7.7% down from 8.2% in September and the Producer Price Index (wholesale Prices) was 8% down from 8.5% in September. October Core inflation (CPI less food and energy) was 6.3%, a long way from the Federal Reserves target of 2%. The Federal Reserve will continue to raise interest rates and shrink its balance sheet (Quantitative Tightening) to fight inflation.

Bottom Line:
Even though Active Listings Continue to fall, unit sales are dropping at a faster pace which is increasing Months of Inventory as buyers adjust to rising mortgage rates. Expect more softening in Unit Sales and Prices as the Federal Reserve continues to fight inflation.

           Month Over Month, October 2022 vs September 2022

  • Median Sold Prices:
    Single Families -5.7%; Condos +5.5%; Multi-Families -2.9%

  • Unit Sales: 
    Single Families -19.1%, Condos -34.8%, Multi-Families -38.1%

  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -2.5%, Condos +0.7%, Multi-Families -9.7%

  • Current Months of Inventory: 
    Single Families 1.7, Condos 1.9, Multi-Families 2.5

    Year Over Year, October 2022 vs October 2021

  • Median Sold Prices: 
    Single Families +3.8%; Condos +19.9%; Multi-Families +3.0%

  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families -25.2% , Condos -32.7%, Multi-Families -48.5%.

  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -6.5%; Condos -32.4%; Multi-Families -26.6%

  • Change in Months of Inventory:
    Single Families +30.8%, Condos 0%, Multi-Families +38.9%.

    Terry Sullivan

 

Essex County Housing Report October 18, 2022

Essex County September Housing Report 10/18/2022 

The Federal Reserve’s war on inflation is dampening real estate sales as the Fed continues to raise interest rates and reduce its purchase of Mortgage Backed Securities to fight inflation. After the last CPI Report which was a surprisingly high 8.2% inflation rate on 9/13/2022, the 30 year mortgage rate rose to 7.16% and the 10 year Treasury Notes rose to 4% on 9/14/2022.

Units Sales and Active Listings continue to fall and days on market are now rising in response to rising mortgage rates. Price increases are slowing.

Bottom Line:

Inventory will remain low as high mortgage rates deter home sellers with low mortgage rates from listing their homes. At the same time, buyers are resisting rising prices because of high mortgage rates / affordability. Hence, prices will continue to flatten or turn negative as sellers and buyers try to reach an equilibrium.

Month Over Month, September 2022 vs August 2022

  • Median Sold Prices:

    Single Families +1.5%; Condos +0.3%; Multi-Families +7.7%

  • Unit Sales: 

    Single Families -10.2%, Condos +1.8%, Multi-Families -3.4%

  • Active Listings:

    Single Families -8.9%, Condos -14.8%, Multi-Families -15.2%

  • Current Months of Inventory: 

    Single Families 1.3, Condos 1.2, Multi-Families 1.6.

    Year Over Year, September 2022 vs September 2021

  • Median Sold Prices: 
    Single Families +10.0%; Condos +8.7%; Multi-Families +14.8%

  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families -8.8% , Condos -13.4%, Multi-Families -20.8%.

  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -10.4%; Condos -37.0%; Multi-Families -30.6%

  • Change in Months of Inventory:
    Single Families -7.1%, Condos -25.0%, Multi-Families -11.1%.

 

 

Should I Sell My House This Year?

 

Should I Sell My House This Year?

There’s no denying the housing market is undergoing a shift this season as buyer demand slows and the number of homes for sale grows. But that shift actually gives you some unique benefits when you sell. Here’s a look at the key opportunities you have if you list your house this fall.

Opportunity #1: You Have More Options for Your Move

One of the biggest stories today is the growing supply of homes for sale. Housing inventoryhas been increasing since the start of the year, primarily because higher mortgage rates helped cool off the peak frenzy of buyer demand. But what you may not realize is, that actually could benefit you.

If you’re selling your house to make a move, it means you’ll have more options for your own home search. That gives you an even better chance to find a home that checks all of your boxes. So, if you’ve put off selling because you were worried about being able to find somewhere to go, know your options have improved.

Opportunity #2: The Number of Homes on the Market Is Still Low

Just remember, while data shows the number of homes for sale has increased this year, housing supply is still firmly in sellers’ market territory. To be in a balanced market where there are enough homes available to meet the pace of buyer demand, there would need to be a six months’ supply of homes. According to the latest report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), in July, there was only a 3.3 months’ supply.

While you’ll have more options for your own home search, inventory is still low, and that means your home will still be in demand if you price it right. That’s why the most recent datafrom NAR also shows the average home sold in July still saw multiple offers and sold in as little as 14 days.

Opportunity #3: Your Equity Has Grown by Record Amounts

The home price appreciation the market saw over the past few years has likely given your equity (and your net worth) a considerable boost. Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.comexplains:

“Home owners trying to decide if now is the time to list their home for sale are still in a good position in many markets across the country as a decade of rising home prices gives them a substantial equity cushion . . .” 

If you’ve been holding off on selling because you’re worried about how rising prices will impact your next home search, rest assured your equity can help. It may be just what you need to cover a large portion (if not all) of the down payment on your next home.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking about selling your house this season, let’s connect so you have the expert insights you need to make the best possible move today.

Essex County Housing Report September 17, 2022

 Essex County September Housing Report 9/17/2022 

Sellers are adjusting to rising mortgage rates and buyer resistance by lowering their prices.  Current Unit sales rose over 11% from July to August as median sold prices for August 2022 fell -5.5% for Singles and -0.5% for Condos from July 2022.  Inventory remains extremely low with only 1.2 months for Singles, and 1.3 months for Condos.  

6 months of inventory is a balanced market. 

Year over year, August median home sale prices rose 5.0% for Singles and 6.4% for Condos while Unit Sales fell 10.1% for Singles and 17.6% for Condos. 

30 year conforming mortgage rates today were 6.35%, a 14 year high.

Bottom line, in spite of an extremely low 1.2 months of inventory, August 2022 median sold prices fell 5.5% for Singles and 0.5% for Condos from July 2022 to offset rapidly rising mortgage rates and stimulate Buyer interest.  August Home Sales rose 11% from July 2022.  

10 Pro Tips For A Smooth Home Move

 

 

10 Pro Tips for a Smooth Home Move

 

The process of buying a new home can be both exhilarating and exhausting. But the journey doesn’t stop when you close on your property. On the contrary, you still have quite a bit to do before you can begin the process of settling into your new place. 

 

Fortunately, you don’t have to do everything in a day. You don’t have to do it all alone, either. When you work with us to sell or purchase a home, you’ll have an ally by your side long after your transaction has closed. We’ll continue to be a resource, offering advice and referrals whenever you need them on packing, hiring movers and contractors, and acclimating to your new home and neighborhood. 

 

When it comes to a life event as stressful as moving, it pays to have a professional by your side. Here are some of our favorite pro tips to share with clients as they prepare for an upcoming move. 

 

1. Watch out for moving scams.

 

Maybe you receive a flyer for a moving company in the mail. Perhaps you find a mover online. Either way, never assume that you’re getting accurate information. According to the Better Business Bureau, moving-related fraud is on the rise. In 2021 alone, individuals and families reported more than $730,000 lost to moving scams, an increase of 216% over the previous year.

 

How can you tell if a moving deal is too good to be true? Trust your instincts. If the price appears too low or you can’t pin down the mover’s physical business address, try someone else. The same goes for any moving company representative who dodges questions. Reputable movers should offer transparent pricing, conduct in-home estimates, and provide referrals and copies of their insurance documents upon request.2 For help finding trustworthy movers, reach out. We’d be happy to share our recommendations.  

 

2. Insure your belongings.

 

Your moving company promises to take care of your custom piano or your antique furniture. But don’t just take their word for it. Ask to see how much insurance they carry and talk about how the claims process works. That way, you’ll know what is (and isn’t) covered in case of loss or damage.

 

Of course, some items are priceless because they’re irreplaceable. You might want to move your more sensitive valuables (jewelry, documents, family heirlooms, etc.) in your own vehicle just to be safe. For added peace of mind, call your rental or home insurance provider if you’re moving anything yourself. You might already be protected or be able to purchase extra insurance to cover your move. If those options are unavailable, you could opt for moving insurance from a third-party carrier.3

 

3. Start packing when you start looking for a new home.

 

As soon as your house hunting begins in earnest, think about packing away things you won’t need for the next few months. These could include seasonal or holiday decor, clothing, and books. Tackling just one or two boxes a day will give you a head start.

 

If you're going to put your current home on the market, you'll want to declutter anyway. Decluttering will make your home seem larger, and depersonalizing helps buyers envision their own items in the space. Consider selling, donating, or throwing out possessions you no longer need. The things you want to keep can be placed in storage until you officially start moving to a new place.

 

4. Pack to make unpacking easier.

 

Have you ever opened a packed box only to find that it’s filled with an assortment of items that don’t belong together? This isn’t efficient and will only make unpacking harder. A better way to pack is to bundle items from a single room in a labeled box. Labels can let movers know (and remind you) where to place each box, whether it’s fragile, and which side needs to be up. Some people like to assign colors to each room in their new home to make distributing color-coded boxes a breeze. 

 

Feel free to unleash your inner organizer with this project. For example, you could create a spreadsheet and assign each box a number. As boxes are packed, simply fill in the spreadsheet with a list of contents. Anyone with access to the spreadsheet can log in and quickly find the desired item.

 

5. Think outside the box when transporting clothes.

 

Who wants to worry about boxing up clothes? If you plan on hiring professional movers, ask if you can leave clothing in your dressers. In many cases, they will use plastic to wrap the dresser so the drawers don’t fall out during transport. If keeping your clothes in your furniture makes it too heavy, the movers might be able to wrap and move drawers by themselves.

 

Another easy transport trick involves turning clean garbage bags into garment bags. Poke a hole in the bottom of a garbage bag, turn the bag upside down, slide it over five to seven garments on hangers, and lay the items flat in the back seat or trunk of your vehicle. The bags will help prevent wrinkling, and your clothes will be ready to hang up when you get to your new home.

 

6. Document prior to disassembling appliances and furnishings.

 

Few things are as confusing as looking at a plastic baggie filled with nuts, bolts, and screws from your disassembled dining room table or sorting through a box of electrical wires and cords to see which ones fit your TV. 

 

The best workaround to easier reassembly is to document the disassembly process. Take photos and videos or thorough notes as you go. Whether it’s your headboard or treadmill, be very precise. And just a tip: Construct your beds first when you get to your new home. After a long moving day, the very last thing you want is to be assembling beds into the wee hours of the morning. 

 

7. Prioritize unpacking kids’ rooms.

 

Children can become very stressed by a big move. To ease their transition, consider prioritizing unpacking their rooms as their “safe zones.”4 You aren’t obligated to unpack everything, certainly. However, set up your children’s rooms to be functional. That way, your kids can hang out in a private oasis away from the chaos while you’re running around and moving everything else.

 

Depending upon how old your youngsters are, you might want to give them decorating leeway, too. Even if it’s just letting them choose where furniture goes, it gives them a sense of buy-in. This can help ease the blues of leaving a former home they loved.

 

8. Be a thoughtful pet parent.

 

Many types of pets can’t handle the commotion of moving day. Knowing this, be considerate and seek ways to give your pets breaks from the action. You might ask a friend to pet sit your pooch or keep your kitty in a quieter room, like a guest bathroom.

 

Be sure to check in on your pet frequently. Pets like to know that you’re around. Give them treats, food, and water throughout the day. When it’s time to transport your pet, do it calmly. At your new property, give your pet access to just a room or two at first. Pets typically prefer to acclimate themselves slowly to unfamiliar environments.5

 

9. Plan for your move like you’re planning for an exciting vacation.

 

When you plan vacations, you probably look up local restaurants, shops, and recreational areas. Who says you can’t do the same thing when moving? Create a list of all the places you want to go and things you want to do around your newly purchased home. Having a to-explore list keeps everyone’s spirits high and gives you starting points to settle into the neighborhood. 

 

And don’t feel that you have to cook that first night. Once the moving trucks are gone, you can always pop over to a local eatery or order DoorDash for major convenience. The first meal in your new home should be a happy, welcoming treat. And if you’re relocating to our neck of the woods, we would love to introduce you to all the hot spots in town and recommend our local favorites.

 

10. Pack an “Open Me First!” box.

 

You won’t be able to unpack all your boxes in one day, but you shouldn’t go without your sheets, pillows, or toothbrush. Designate some boxes with “Open Me First!” labels. (Pro tip: Keep a tool kit front and center for all that reassembling.) 

 

Along these lines, use luggage and duffel bags to transport everyone’s personal must-have items and enough clothing for a couple of days. That way, you won’t have to rummage through everything in the middle of your move looking for sneakers or snacks.

 

When packing your “Open Me First!” boxes, think about which items you’ll need in those first 24 hours. For example, toilet paper and hand soap are musts. A box cutter will make unpacking a lot easier, and paper towels and trash bags are sure to come in handy. Reach out for a complete, printable list of “Open Me First!” box essentials to keep on hand for your next move!

 

 

LET’S GET MOVING

 

Getting the phone call from your real estate agent that your bid was accepted is a thrilling moment. Make sure you keep the positivity flowing during the following weeks by mapping out a streamlined, efficient move. Feel free to get in touch with us today to help make your big move your best move.

 

 

Sources:

 

  1. Better Business Bureau - https://www.bbb.org/article/scams/24198-bbb-scam-alert-avoid-moving-scams-this-national-moving-mont
  2. Move.org - 
    https://www.move.org/how-to-tell-moving-company-scam/
  3. Forbes - 
    https://www.forbes.com/advisor/homeowners-insurance/moving-insurance/
  4. New York Times - 
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/13/parenting/moving-tips-kids.html
  5. ASPCA - 
    https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/general-pet-care/moving-your-pet

Essex County Housing Report August 2022

Essex County August Housing Report 8/10/2022

Rising Home Prices and Mortgage Rates Impacted July Home Sales (condos & singles).

July Unit Sales dropped 16.7% for Singles and 24.9% for Condos from June 2022 and prices also weakened as the public copes with both rising prices and mortgage rates in spite of declining Active Listings. Consequently, the current Months of Inventory in July rose 18.2% to 1.3 months for Singles and rose 40% to 1.4 months for Condos. This is still extraordinarily low as a balanced market is 6 months of inventory. July Home Prices rose 1.2% from June 2022 for Singles but fell 2.3% for Condos.

30 year conforming mortgage rates today are 5.13%, down significantly from the June High of 6.28%.

Bottom line, there are signs of buyer resistance which usually precedes a market shift to a more balanced market.

          Month Over Month, July 2022 vs June 2022

  • Median Sold Prices:

    Single Families +1.2%; Condos -2.3%; Multi-Families +0.3%

  • Unit Sales: 

    Single Families -16.7%, Condos -24.9%, Multi-Families +13.0%

  • Active Listings:

    Single Families -5.8%, Condos -2.2%, Multi-Families -15.0%

  • Current Months of Inventory: 

    Single Families 1.3, Condos 1.4, Multi-Families 1.6.

    Year Over Year, July 2022 vs July 2021

  • Median Sold Prices: 
    Single Families +12.4%; Condos +14.7%; Multi-Families +4.1%

  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families -16.1% , Condos -26.9%, Multi-Families -8.4%.

  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -3.3%; Condos -28.2%; Multi-Families -31.1%

  • Change in Months of Inventory:
    Single Families +8.3%, Condos +0%, Multi-Families -27.3%.
 

    Terry Sullivan

Essex County Housing Report July 13, 2022

 Essex County July Housing Report 7/13/2022 

Year Over Year, June 2022 vs June 2021, Home Prices (Singles + Condos) continued to rise, but at a more modest pace.  Both the number of Unit Sales and Active Listings declined. 

Rising month over month active listings were offset by rising month over month unit sales and the Current Months of Inventory remains very low, 1 month, for both singles and condos.   

30 year mortgage rates surged to 6.28% within the past three week but have settled back to 5.71%.  The Federal Reserve is expected to raise the Federal Funds Rate by 0.75% - 1% shortly as the Federal Reserve fights inflation. This will dampen housing demand and slow the rate of price increases.

Bottom line, the Sellers’ Market remains intact as inventory remains at an extremely low level.  However, home price increases are slowing down as rising mortgage rates take effect.  

Month Over Month, May 2022 vs April 2022, 

  • Median Sold Prices:
    Single Families +3.4%;  Condos +1.1%;  Multi-Families  -10.7%
  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families +34.8%, Condos +0.4%, Multi-Families +26.7%
  • Active Listings:
    Single Families +19.3%, Condos +10.4%, Multi-Families +8.4% 
  • Current Months of Inventory:
    Single Families 1.0, Condos 1.0, Multi-Families 2.0.

Year Over Year, May 2022 vs May 2021

  • Median Sold Prices: 
    Single Families +5.4%; Condos +12.8%;  Multi-Families +6.2% 
  • Unit Sales:
    Single Families -7.2% , Condos -21.8%, Multi-Families -32.1%.
  • Active Listings:
    Single Families -6.0%; Condos -32.6%; Multi-Families -16.2% 
  • Months of Inventory:
    Single Families -0.0%, Condos -9.1%, Multi-Families 25.0%.